'I couldn't control anything': Horror as US woman wakes up to learn she's paralysed

A US fitness coach suddenly found herself bed-bound after contracting a rare disease that paralysed her whole body.

Delilah Corkery was recovering from bronchitis in March 2018 when she began experiencing bizarre new symptoms.

She couldn't taste different flavours in her food, felt uncomfortably hot and her skin burned under warm water.

Soon the 47-year-old California native had lost all feeling in her fingertips, legs and arms. Worried, she and her fiancé went to their local hospital - but a doctor told her she just had vertigo and sent her home.

Ms Corkery woke up the next morning in excruciating pain. Back at the hospital, staff ran a number of tests on her and finally diagnosed her with Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS), a rare nerve disorder that can quickly cause full-body paralysis.

By the time she started receiving urgent treatment, she'd lost all function in her legs, arms, bowels and face.

Her facial paralysis was possibly the most distressing part of her ordeal. She couldn't blink but her vision still worked, so nurses or her fiancé would have to tape her eyelids shut every night so she could sleep, and remove the tape in the morning.

Ms Corkery says she had to take anti-anxiety medication to help her relax at night because she felt paranoid with her eyes taped closed.

"I was always wondering if someone else was in the room as I couldn't see anything," she told Media Drum World.

After three weeks in hospital, including 11 days on life support, she moved to a rehab centre to regain her strength. The normally very active woman had to learn how to walk again through intense physical therapy.

"I had to be moved by the nurses every few hours because I couldn't control anything," she told Media Drum World.

"Going to the bathroom was the worst because GBS affected all my nerves, including my bowels."

She had to use an electronic device to lift herself out of bed, and she suffered intense pain whenever anyone touched her legs. She began to improve after being prescribed a new anti-epileptic drug called Lyrica, and after seven weeks was able to return home.

Ms Corkery documented her journey to recovery on Instagram and YouTube, and still shares updates a year on from her diagnosis.

She told Media Drum World that by raising awareness of a rare but serious condition, she hopes to inspire others to be mindful of their health and appreciate their bodies.

"GBS is a serious condition and can happen to anybody, no matter how healthy you are."